Charlie Bertsch (cbertsch) wrote,
Charlie Bertsch

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Is this what it was like in the Germany my grandparents left behind? The youth are so clean-scrubbed, behaving the way their elders desire, but still apart, together. One picks up a guitar, plays along to a sweet-sixteen blonde singing haphazardly about Jesus. Others mill about, the boys with their shirts off, wiry, tanless. They surf. They play catch with a football. They flirt. But it's all good because it's all godly. I count the fish on the Ford Explorers and their imported look-alikes. The vans are white, the cars and trucks silver. I keep thinking of that moment in Cabaret when everyone in the outdoor beer garden rises in song, praising the stag in the forest. "Bambi is a proto-fascist allegory," I say to you, to anyone who will listen. It makes people laugh. It makes me smile. But that doesn't mean it's not true. Surely these campers approve of the newly restored version of the Disney classic, "available for the first time on DVD!" Each campsite is overflowing with teenage goodness, the over-lean bodies circling the fire pits. It's all good and it gives me the willies. Something is brewing in the Feuerzwangbowle. And they don't even need uniforms to drink it because their lives have the same common denominator already. The mall. The brand names. The slogans. The empty circle at the center where the flames surge toward the sky, feeding off the air of willful ignorance.
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